From uploading his first Vine to creating a merchandise company, YouTuber David Dobrik rapidly rose to fame, but it wasn't all fun and games. Find out how Dobrik became a viral vlogger and what goes on after the cameras stop rolling.
Dobrik was born on July 23rd, 1996, and spent the first six years of his childhood living in Košice, Slovakia. But when he was six-years-old, David's parents decided to move to a suburb of Chicago.
David also grew up with three younger siblings, Esther, Sarah, and Toby, who aren't typically featured on his social media. He explained that his siblings don't enjoy the spotlight the way he does, so David rarely mentions them.
Star Tennis Player
In school, David was always known as the class clown since making jokes came naturally to him. His teachers at Vernon Hills High School had a good sense of humor and welcomed his funny side. However, David wasn't the biggest fan of academics, as he preferred to be outside on the tennis court.
Tennis meant everything to Dobrik as a teenager. When he wasn't in the classroom, he could likely be found practicing his backhand on the court. According to Vernon Hills Tennis records, he even qualified for the 2014 Boys State Tournament, where he came in third place in the doubles tournament.
Discovering His True Passion
At age 17, David discovered his true passion when he first came across Vine, an app for sharing lipsyncing videos. After uploading his first video to the platform, Dobrik received incredible feedback, so he continued creating and sharing videos, and the more active he was on Vine, the more followers he gained.
He shared all sorts of prank and comedy sketch videos, and by 2014, he'd reached 120 thousand followers, and then 1.5 million the following year. David had told Forbes that he earned around "$1,500 to $2,000 a month," so he had a feeling he was going to make it big. But he couldn't have predicted his next move just yet.
"It Was Just This Moment of Panic"
After he graduated from High School, David faced a tough decision. His parents said he could either go to college, or move out and find a way to support himself. So, he decided to take the plunge and move to L.A., confident that he could make a name for himself and pursue the career of his dreams.
L.A. put Dobrik to the test, as he had to find a way to support himself without a steady income. "We were at the grocery store and buying peanut butter and bread, and other groceries, and the total came to $25. I looked at my friend and said, 'I don't know if we can do this,'" he recalled. "It was just this moment of panic."
No Room for Breaks
David made his YouTube debut in 2015, starting by uploading video collaborations with other Vine stars that frequently involved pranking one another. He committed to posting three videos each week, specifically on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, and hasn't missed a day since.
Because of this commitment, Dobrik "Doesn't allow himself to take breaks for holidays, birthdays, or vacations," he told Forbes. After five years of working non-stop, David finally allowed himself a rest, only because of the global pandemic. But even during a vacation from work, his creative mind never stops.
Introducing The Vlog Squad
David loved collaborating with other vloggers, so he eventually teamed up with some of his closest friends, Zane Hijazi, Jason Nash, Josh Peck, and others, to build his network. They all continued to film for their own individual channels, but David helped bring the group together to benefit everyone.
Many viewers were drawn to The Vlog Squad because of their high-energy, hysterical, and chaotic videos. Dobrik's also featured countless celebrities on his YouTube channel, including Kylie Jenner, Jennifer Lopez, and Justin Bieber. Evidently, he always finds new ways to add to his fanbase.
His Secret to Success
Dobrik's instant rise to fame intrigued many, as they were dying to know what exactly set him apart from other vloggers. With 1.5 million subscribers, clearly, he was doing something right! But fans desperately wanted to know how he succeeded in such a cut-throat industry.
"If people see that you're passionate about what you're creating, they're going to enjoy it," David shared. He used his passion for creating video content to steer him in the right direction and close friendships with other bloggers to put together incredible collaborations.
Secret Hollywood Romance
While Dobrik was busy building his career and climbing the ladder of success as a vlogger, he also had a secret romance that he kept out of the public eye for a while. In 2015, he met actress Liza Koshy, and after a few months of crushing on her, he finally asked her out on a date, but they kept their relationship a secret.
After six months of dating, the couple shared their relationship on Instagram. In 2017, David said that dating Liza was his "biggest and proudest accomplishment." He also revealed, "I am in love with all that you do and all that you create. Thanks for being my partner and best friend." But sadly, they would eventually break up.
Seemed Like the Perfect Pair
Liza Koshy also jumpstarted her career on Vine back in 2013. Before launching her YouTube channel, Koshy focused more on her acting, comedy, and TV hosting career. Like David, Liza bravely moved to L.A. in 2015 to pursue a job in entertainment, and the two happened to cross paths.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, Koshy was named "The fastest YouTube personality to reach 10 million subscribers" in 2017. Liza's channel gained over 17 million subscribers after three years and more than two billion views. Clearly, this power couple had a lot in common, as they were both successful and passionate vloggers.
Weren't Meant To Be
David and Liza shared their relationship with their fans for years, frequently appearing on one another's social channels. But in 2018, they uploaded a video called We Broke Up, where they revealed that they'd mutually decided to part ways. Liza explained that she needed time on her own to focus on self-love.
But the former couple claimed they ended on good terms; "The only thing that's different is we're not boyfriend and girlfriend anymore." David also said, "We did nothing to each other to cause a breakup. We have a lot of growth and development and learning and loving to do… You never know what could happen, but just not now."
A New Chapter
When Dobrik's original platform, Vine, shut down in 2016, he started focusing solely on uploading YouTube videos. So, he created another channel, "David Dobrik Too," where he posted more of The Vlog Squad's content. This was in addition to his first channel, "David Dobrik."
"David Dobrik Too" currently has 8.28 million subscribers on YouTube and is the vlogger's leading platform for sharing bloopers, challenges, deleted scenes, and other hilarious content. Between both of his channels, David's racked up over 20 million YouTube subscribers over just a few years.
A Glimpse Into Life as a YouTuber
While already maintaining two YouTube channels, David collaborated with The Vlog Squad member Jason Nash to launch a brand new podcast. They called this new project Views, and it gave fans a better idea of their life behind the scenes, including all of the chaos that went down between vloggers.
With a new episode released every Monday, Views gave Dobrik and Jason's fans an inside view at the life of a vlogger. Their conversations involved "Confessing their most intimate thoughts, discussing pop-culture, and dissecting their own contentious relationship."
Making It Big
After gaining internet stardom, Dobrik broadened his career as far as the big screen. The vlogger lent his voice to the character, Axel in the hit animation Angry Birds Movie 2. Following that, David hosted the Teen Choice Awards in 2019, with none other than Lucy Hale.
Things only got better for Dobrik. After landing a spot as a judge on the singing show, America's Most Musical Family, Dobrik received his very own award as Nickelodeon's Favorite Social Star in 2019. Not only was this a life-changing achievement, but it was given to David by someone who meant the world to him.
Nickelodeon's Drake and Josh star, Josh Peck, had always been an inspiration to David. The vlogger expressed this during his Kid's Choice Awards acceptance speech when Josh handed David the Favorite Social Star Award. According to Dobrik, this was "The best feeling."
But this wasn't the only special milestone that the two shared. When Josh and his wife Paige O'Brien welcomed their first child, baby Max made his first internet appearance on David's channel. The vlog titled WELCOMING A NEW MEMBER OF THE FAMILY!! featured Dobrik holding the newborn, and the good times kept on coming.
Winning Over Gen Z
Ever since Dobrik introduced YouTube to his natural-born desire to pull epic pranks, he'd never been afraid to push the limits. From transforming his assistant's bedroom into a beach bash to filling swimming pools with "1,400 pounds of dry ice," he's genuinely unlike any other internet star.
All of his unique content has landed David the title as the fifth most-watched YouTuber to date. According to a financial analyst survey by Piper Jaffray, David's been named Generation Z's favorite social media personality, which doesn't come as much of a surprise given his enormous fanbase. And that's all at just 24-years-old!
Purchasing His Dream Home
David's certainly come a long way since he first moved to L.A. and launched his YouTube channel. At one point, he could barely scrape together $25 for food, and now, he's the proud owner of a beautiful $9.5 million home in the San Fernando Valley. Now that's quite an accomplishment!
His 7,800 square foot mansion has six bedrooms, seven bathrooms and is complete with a stunning view of the valley. Dobrik's home also has a full outdoor kitchen, luxurious pool, movie theater, gym, and just about everything you could imagine in a dream house. We'd love the invite to this lavish property!
Ridin' In Style
In addition to buying an unbelievable home, David's sponsor, SeatGeek, has given him 18 luxury cars. Since he doesn't need all 18 of them, he's given a few of these epic cars to friends to literally share the wealth. David even surprised his dad with the car of his dreams. But Dobrik's helped people in other meaningful ways too.
After he ran into one of his fans at Target, David shocked him by helping him prepare for the school dance. Dobrik arranged for the fan to get a haircut, new suit, and even gave him a brand new Mustang to make things even more incredible. Evidently, he loves to bring joy to others whenever he has the chance.
More Than Just an Assistant
When David hired a full-time Executive Assistant in 2017, he wanted to make sure it was someone he could trust with his life. So, he gave the role to Natalie Mariduena, his long-time best friend who's been by his side for years, as they were classmates at Vernon Hills High School.
Natalie is reportedly single, despite numerous rumors about her and David being a couple. David "Refused to take the rumors true by saying they are not dating and proclaimed to be BFFs," according to Biographyday. Currently, Natalie lives in David's mansion with him, to be by his side whenever duty calls.
Dabbling in the Fashion Industry
Natalie's been a massive help to David as he launched his merchandise line, CLICKBAIT. She models the apparel for the website and helps David with day to day tasks. CLICKBAIT, sponsored by Fanjoy, sells clothing, hats, accessories, school supplies, and more.
The brand currently has nine different clothing collections, with pieces ranging in price from $22 to $50. Dobrik recently released two new lines; The Rainbow Collection features sweatshirts, sweatpants, t-shirts, and phone cases. The second is the Sherpa Collection, which includes Sherpa hoodies, crewnecks, and sweatpants.
In addition to creating CLICKBAIT, David also developed his own photography and image editing app, which he launched on Christmas Day in 2019. He named the app "David's Disposable," as it gives users the ability to snap photos that appear to be old school as if they came from a disposable camera.
The app's inspiration came from David's second Instagram account, where he shared photos from his own disposable camera. "Just open the app, take your photos, and wait for them to develop," he explained. "I'm bringing my iconic disposable camera to your phone, so you can easily take high-quality film photos just like me!"
Net Worth Is $15 Million
At age 24, Dobrik's one of the most popular and highest-paid YouTube stars in the world, and his income certainly reflects that. Between his millions of YouTube subscribers and his latest business venture, CLICKBAIT, he's achieved a net worth of approximately $15 million, according to Celebrity Net Worth.
David's only been on our radar for a few years and has already gotten this far, so chances are, he'll only continue to thrive and grow his fanbase, as well as his net worth. Plus, Dobrik has big dreams of becoming the next Late Night Talk Show host, so something tells us he has no intention of slowing down anytime soon.
Proud Owner of a Pink Pony
While David's appeared to be somewhat careful about spending his earnings, he hasn't been shy about a few of his one of a kind purchases over the years. After buying himself a Tesla a few years ago, Dobrik invested $1 million into the company. And this was after he purchased his exquisite Sherman Oaks mansion.
One of his more unique purchases was a $500 pink pony, which he was proud to show off. David also has a history of buying extravagant props for his videos, such as $10,000 worth of dry ice. Plus, he and his former girlfriend, Liza, went to the 2016 Rio Olympics. Overall, Dobrik's quite transparent about most aspects of his life.
"I Don't Wanna Have To Move, but This Is Terrifying"
Many fans appreciate that David is so open about his life, but eventually, this became a problem, as some showed up at the vlogger's home. So, David told viewers, "Stop coming here, please, I don't wanna have to move, but this is terrifying." He revealed that he is "Genuinely starting to become scared."
Dobrik told his followers again on Twitter, saying, "Hello guys, I love everyone that supports me and shows me love. Truly. BUT PLEASE STOP COMING TO MY F***ING HOUSE." In his podcast, David told listeners that his assistant is especially fearful of strangers coming to the house, hoping this would put a stop to it.
Offended His Fans
David's fans viewed him as an extremely positive and respectful person until he uploaded one particular video in 2016. He and his former girlfriend Liza spoke in Asian accents while tasting Japanese candy, and many viewers were displeased. "It's not racist, that's like the sounds I hear when they talk," he said in the video.
Days later, Liza profusely apologized on Twitter and emphasized that they'd never meant to hurt anyone's feelings. "What might have been intended as 'playful' was actually to some, incredibly painful, and for that, I am so sorry," she wrote. Liza acknowledged that the video turned out to be "tainted with implicit bias."
Publicly Apologized for His Mistakes
When an old video that David had uploaded to Vine, using a derogatory word, resurfaced in 2020, he decided it was time to acknowledge his mistakes. Dobrik told fans that from that point on, he would "Continue his channel with a new mindset," as he hadn't previously realized how much he'd influenced viewers.
"I'm ashamed and embarrassed about some of the things that I did in Vines… I genuinely feel awful about it," David said to his fans. "I'm going to do better actively… I'm sorry. I did not ever mean to make anybody feel out of place." Dobrik desperately hoped his fans would forgive him for things he'd done in the past.
Time for a Change
While addressing his mistakes on his podcast, Views, David reflected on his career and discussed making necessary changes; "I think for a while I was just kind of like, I'm the goofball. But I think there are parts of this where I need to be more serious because I want to be a good role model for the people watching."
David continued, "I want them [fans] to have a positive experience when they interact with anything I produce… I feel like on a handful of occasions I just missed the mark on that, and that really bums me out." While he loved showing off his goofy side, Dobrik decided it was time to handle some things on a more serious note.
Lost Over $200,000 in Ad Revenue
In 2019, David lost a lot of money after advertisers pulled their sponsorships from YouTube. In an interview with Men's Health, he explained that these advertisers "Using copyrighted songs in videos that are a little more 'inappropriate' than [others] on the platform" caused his earnings to go from $275,000 to $2,000 per month.
He was still getting around 200 million views on each video, which was more than usual, but David was "Actually making less money a month on YouTube than [he] was when [he] was waiting tables at a retirement home... Which is pretty crazy," he revealed. But Dobrik's main focus was the quality of his videos rather than profit.
Always Giving Back
After losing a ton of money from the dropped sponsorships, David admitted that YouTube wouldn't be sustainable forever. He explained that the most important thing he'd learned from working with different brands was "Instead of taking the money... give it to the person that needs it more than [you] do."
Dobrik became a firm believer in the phrase, "Always give back." He explained, Once you have money, you're gonna want to give back, and it's the best, best feeling." So, with what he considers "Literally the best job in the world," David's continuously made an effort to give back whenever possible.
Hosting a TV Show
In August of 2020, David began his newest adventure as the host of a new Discovery Channel series, Dodgeball Thunderdome. Contestants compete in challenges using strategy, strength, and brainpower, but "The winners won't always be people who finish first, and losers won't always be the ones who finish last," he revealed.
David and his co-hosts, Andrew Hawkins and Erin Lim, "Put contestants to the test with different kinds of challenges to win a $25K cash prize," according to The Hollywood Reporter. Contestants range from professional athletes to individuals who consider themselves completely unathletic.
Continuing the Journey
With all that he's accomplished so far, it's clear that David's built an entire brand from the ground up, and it looks like he has a lot more in store for the future. Whether he's pranking his friends, hosting a TV show, or selling CLICKBAIT merchandise, this YouTube icon's thriving.
Dobrik's emphasized that he's extremely passionate about his career and shared, "One of the things I still sometimes realize is how absolutely, crazy lucky I am... I have the best job in the entire world, so I can't complain." As a satisfied and successful vlogger, David suggests that his fans, "Just go do you."